How to Change the Spark Plug on Your Cub Cadet Lawn Tractor

How to Change the Spark Plug on Your Cub Cadet Lawn Tractor

The spark plug on your Cub Cadet equipment should be replaced at least once a year of after 100 hours of use. Spark plugs provide an ignition source for your machine’s engine to power your Cub Cadet lawn tractor. When they go bad, mowing your lawn becomes a challenge. Change the spark plug on your Cub Cadet lawn tractor regularly to keep your mower up and running throughout the whole season.

Before performing any maintenance on your Cub Cadet lawn tractor, refer to your owner’s manual for maintenance instructions and safety information. Maintenance instructions vary by model, so depending on your lawn mower model our instructions may vary slightly.

Before working on your Cub Cadet mower, follow these safety precautions:

  • Shut off the engine
  • Allow the engine to become cool to the touch
  • Disconnect the spark plug wire to prevent accidental starting
  • To carry out this task, you’ll need these tools:
  • 5/8 deep well socket
  • Wrench
  • Extension

To change the spark plug on your Cub Cadet lawn tractor:

  • Locate the spark plug on the side of the engine.
  • Use your socket to loosen the spark plug. Loosen it and grab the spark plug on the end, and give it a couple more turns.
  • Install the new spark plug.
  • Replace the old spark plug with a manufacturer approved replacement part (refer to your Cub Cadet owner’s manual).
  • Hold the spark plug on the end and stick it into the proper hole on the tractor.
  • Turn the spark plug to the left to make sure that it is starting to thread in properly, but turn it to the right to tighten it.
  • Tighten the spark plug by hand. By doing this, you can tell if the threads are going in correctly and won’t strip the threads out of the head of the engine. Tighten as much as you can and then put your socket back on the spark plug to tighten it all the way down. Give it an extra snug turn.
  • If you are working with a twin-cylinder engine, repeat the same steps to change the spark plug on the other side of the machine. Once the spark plugs have been changed, reconnect the spark plug wire.

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Cub Cadet Engine Oil Maintenance

Of all the maintenance done to your Cub Cadet equipment, engine oil maintenance is the most important. Checking, changing and using the proper crankcase oil are extremely important to the life and performance of your machine. Failure to use the correct oil and keep it clean can affect engine life and reliability.

The most important scheduled oil change over the life of an engine is the first one. Most manufacturers recommend performing the oil change after the first 5-10 hours of use. This helps flush out small particles that accumulate naturally during the break-in period.

Refer to your Cub Cadet owner’s manuals for viscosity, grades and time intervals for oil changes. Different machines require different oil and it is important to pay special attention to those recommendations in small engines.

A small engine uses engine oil to help keep it cool in high temperatures, so pay attention to maintenance when operating in those conditions. Check the engine oil before each use, checking for both proper oil level and for color.

Be sure to use high-quality detergent oil that has the American Petroleum Institute (API) rating. When changing engine oil allow ample time for a complete drainage.

When engine oil is new, it has a golden amber color. Over time, heat and dirt particles cause the oil to darken. Combustion byproducts, contaminants, and oxidized lubricant build up to form sludge, which will cause the oil color to darken. Dark oil is a good indicator for an oil change.

Engine oil maintenance is not the only maintenance that keeps your Cub Cadet equipment in working condition.

Other important maintenance includes air filter maintenance, gasoline maintenance, and spark plug maintenance. If you want your Cub Cadet lawn mower, snow blower, and other outdoor power equipment to operate properly for years, stay on top of regular maintenance.

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Lawn Tractor Tire Chains

Lawn Tractor Tire Chains

When using your Cub Cadet Lawn Tractor during the winter season, you may find that the tractor tires don’t have the stability and traction needed when the pavement is covered by hard-packed snow or ice. Under these conditions, you can increase the traction by using lawn tractor tire chains.

Most tire chains are used on lawn tractors’ rear drive tires. Since manufacturers have been making snow blowers more and more powerful, they can also provide added grip to 2-stage snow blower tires that would otherwise slide around when under full power.

Not only do tire chains add traction to your rear wheel drive, they also help break up ice on your drive and walkways. Tire chains are highly suited for driveways that are inclined. Since they are made of hardened steel, combined with the weight of the tractor, there is risk of damage if tire chains are used and operated on brick pavers. If you store your Cub Cadet tractor in the garage, it could possibly damage weak floor surfaces.

There are 2- and 4-link chains available, which refer to the spacing between skipped side links. For 2-link spacing, cross chains occur between every two side link chains. For 4-link spacing, cross chains occur between every four link chains.

Which chain is better? That depends on which chain spacing suits your needs. The 2-link spacing tire chains will give more traction because there are more cross links and the tractor’s ride will be steadier. The 4-link spacing chains are generally less expensive, and still provide a little extra traction.

The chain size is the same dimension that is formed into the side of the tire wall. Tire chains are available in every size used for lawn and garden tractor wheels. Some chain sets are meant for more than one tire size, and links may have to be removed with bolt cutters or by bending the connecting links with pliers.

To Install Lawn Tractor Tire Chains you will need:

  • Tire chain set
  • Air compressor
  • Bolt cutters or strong pliers
  • A level area of pavement to work from

Here’s What To Do:

  1. Semi-deflate the tires that you will be installing chains on
  2. Lay the chains out flat on the ground and remove any tangles
  3. Lay the chain over the tire, cross chain hook facing up, and fastener to the outside
  4. Tuck the first cross chain between the front of the tire and pavement
  5. Move the tractor forward until the end fasteners are about axle high
  6. Hook the inside fastener first, remove slack, then hook outside fastener
  7. You want the chain to be hand tight which will extend the life and performance of the tire chains
  8. Fill tires to the proper PSI rated on tire wall – this will seat the chains to proper tension

Any remaining length can be shortened by removing one or more cross sections. Using pliers to pry the cross chain connecting link open and unhook or use bolt cutters.

It is important to check that you have enough clearance in both rear wheel wells for tire chains. There should be, at minimum, three inches of clearance between the tire and the inside wall and any drive components.

If you still need more traction, some tractors have wheel weight kits that mount on the outside of the rim, or “suitcase” styled weights to add to a rear weight bar bracket, if available as an accessory.

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4 Ways to Dispose of Leaves

4 Ways to Dispose of Leaves

When fall rolls around, sometimes it’s hard to decide the best way to dispose of the leaves scattered across your lawn. Is it better to bag or mulch? Leave leaf piles for curbside pickup or compost them? No one method is correct because every leaf removal situation is different. Our experts discuss the different ways to dispose of leaves to help you decide which method is best for you.

Method 1 – Bagging

For areas that do not offer open curbside pickup, bagging is a popular and eco-friendly alternative. Using a leaf blower or rake, gather leaves into piles and dispose into paper lawn and leaf compost.

Unlike plastic trash bags, compost bags will decompose over time. You can also maximize bag space by shredding leaves before disposing of them, compacting yard debris down to a fraction of its original size.

Method 2 – Curbside Pickup

Many cities offer curbside leaf pickup during fall months. Research your city’s guidelines to learn if seasonal leaf pickup is available in your area. If it is, use a powerful leaf blower to blow leaves onto a large tarp. Drag the tarp to the curb, and then wait for your local collection service to show up and take the leaves away.

Method 3 – Mulching

Mulching is another great way to rid your lawn of leaves.  You can even use with your lawn mower to do so. Simply mow your lawn as you normally would, and chop leaves as you go. Along with grass clippings, finely-chopped leaves will naturally decompose, returning nutrients to your soil and improving the health of your lawn.

Keep up with leaves as they fall, or you may end up with leaf piles that contribute to thatch and do not break down as easily. If this happens, you should consider an alternative cleanup method mentioned here.

Method 4 – Compost

If you’re looking for a way to speed up leaf decomposition in your own yard, you may choose to add shredded leaves to your compost bin. Use leaves over time as needed to mulch your flower beds for the winter, or fertilize your gardens in the spring.

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5 Fuel Tips for Your Outdoor Power Equipment

5 Fuel Tips for Your Outdoor Power Equipment

Using the correct fuel in your outdoor power equipment is very important. If you do not use the proper fuel or change it in the proper time, your machine will suffer. Read on to learn what our experts have to say about fuel and how it affects your outdoor power equipment.

1 – Only purchase the amount of fuel that will be used in 30 days

After 30 days, the volatile compounds in the fuel start evaporating, and this occurs whether the gas is in your outdoor power equipment or in the gas can. As fuel sits and grows older, it evaporates and forms brown sticky deposits that eventually turn into a hard varnish. Deposits and varnish can plug passages in the carburetor, preventing the engine from running properly.

2 – Purchase gasoline with an octane rating of 87 or higher

Standard 87 octane gasoline is perfect for small engines. However, mid-grade or premium gas with an octane rating of 89 or higher can be used for engines that require the higher octane. Read your owner’s manual for information on the proper fuel to use in your outdoor power equipment.

3 – Don’t use gasoline with more than 10% ethanol

Engines produced for use in outdoor power equipment are not designed for gasoline with more than 10% ethanol. Using higher ethanol fuel blends can lead to engine damage and performance issues.

4 – Use gasoline without any ethanol

Ethanol-free gas will reduce the amount of moisture the gasoline can absorb from the atmosphere. Many areas carry ethanol-free gas. Visit https://www.pure-gas.org/ to locate ethanol-free gas stations near you.

5 – Use fuel stabilizer

When stabilizer is added to fuel they separate and create a thin film on top of the fuel to keep out air and moisture. These stabilizers also reduce the rate at which the fuel’s volatile compounds evaporate.

Try adding a stabilizer to your fuel the day the it is purchased to help it stay fresh longer.

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